Editor's Statement

Editor’s column

This article appeared in the Volume 2, Issue 2 Fall 2020 issue of the Appalachian Curator. Click here to view a PDF of the full issue.

Welcome to the Fall 2020 issue of the Appalachian Curator. We hope you’re doing well as the season brings us shorter days and colder weather.

Despite the challenges the COVID has brought, we are glad to feature two articles that highlight the good work archivists, librarians, and scholars are doing in the region. Our featured collection is the Historic Frank Foster Memorial Library by the Urban Appalachian Community Coalition in Cincinnati. Moving from urban Appalachia to rural North Carolina, “Influence and Legacy: The Farmer’s Federation in Madison County, NC, ” describes how the archives at Mars Hill University collaborated with the Appalachian Barn Alliance to create a virtual tour, exhibit, and Zoom presentation about the role of the Farmers’ Federation in Western North Carolina.

When we published the last issue of Appalachian Curator in July, most Appalachian special collections were, in response to the COVID pandemic, closed or functioning at a reduced capacity. As we entered the fall months many collections began to open back up, often with reduced hours or limited access. We adapted to pandemic conditions, and in various ways, attempted to return to whatever semblance of “normal” we could muster. This issue’s article “Working during COVID: Appalachian archives respond” includes reports from archival repositories and archivists on how they met the ongoing challenges of working during the pandemic, often with creativity and resilience.

This issue of the Curator echoes the challenges of COVID in other ways. We had to temporarily suspend our publication of the updated Archives of Appalachia project due to funding, but we hope to be back on track by the next issue. You’ll also notice far fewer new acquisitions than normal, reflecting how it’s been difficult to acquire materials during the challenges of the pandemic.

Here’s hoping you all stay warm and safe this winter. As always, feel free to send us your article ideas and new acquisitions. Our deadline for the next issue is March 15. We look forward to hearing from you.

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